Monday, February 17, 2003, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Drunken medicos misbehave with girls
Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service

Identify miscreants, demand girls

Although Euphoria is held every year at the GMCH-32, such a case has been unheard of in the past. The girls feel that this year’s fest has not been very enjoyable for them, the onus now lies on the college authorities to identify the group that allegedly indulged in objectionable acts last night. Most girl students also demand that the authorities, after identifying the miscreants, should forward a letter of objection to the institution from which they had come. No girl has, however, approached the GMCH for the fear of being identified.

Chandigarh, February 16
The students of Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32, are organising Euphoria for fun and entertainment, but when entertainment acquires harassing proportions, the issue moves out of the realm of fun and becomes rather grave. Last night, a group of hooligans (reportedly medical students from outside the city) allegedly misbehaved with many girls at the venue of Frenzy, a dance party organised in the basement near the Emergency ward of the hospital.

Attended heavily by medical students from all over the country, Frenzy virtually turned out to be a frenzied affair, with a group of about 10 heavily drunken boys allegedly misbehaving with girls. So objectionable was their behaviour that most girl medical students, had to vacate the dance floor within a few minutes.

Although last night’s incident did not go far enough to make it to the formal complaint records of the police, it becomes important to raise it in public interest. The case points to the way some students pursuing medical stream are going immodest.

The incident took place at about 1 a.m. yesterday when Frenzy was underway in the GMCH. About 10 drunk boys allegedly started misbehaving with girls standing in the queue formed to check identity cards of the visitors. Those present at the venue last night informed Chandigarh Tribune that the boys were passing objectionable remarks on girls and were pestering them to no end.

Eyewitnesses added that after securing entry to the dance party, the said group allegedly started teasing girls. Some girls, whom Chandigarh Tribune talked to, admitted that, in their bid to avoid that group, they took shelter in safe corners, but later when things went out of control they returned to their respective hostels. Some added they got more frightened when they found no attendant at their hostel last night at about 2 pm.

A girl who was present at Frenzy last night, said, “They just would not listen. Other boys seemed to know them. It is difficult to say who they were, but some boys said they were from the GMCH, Amritsar. Some others said their entry was banned at Pulse, a festival organised by AIIMS. We don’t know if this is true, but after what we saw last night, I think the group in question should be identified and its entry in fests should be banned.”

Students added that the police officials on duty at the GMCH had to intervene to control the situation. Said a girl, “We saw some policemen warning those boys and disallowing them from getting back to the party.” Sector 34 police personnel, when contacted, said the incident might have taken place, but that there was no formal DDR.

Meanwhile, Amit Gupta, student organiser of Euphoria, gave an unconvincing answer, saying, “We had heard of some girl being pushed. That was all.” Dr Raj Bahadur, MS, GMCH-32, however, was sincerely concerned about the security of girls. He said, “We have posted heavy security at venues and hostels where girls are staying.”



Euphoria enters third day with Jassi live
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 16
The four-day all-India cultural extravaganza hosted by Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32, entered its third day today with students enjoying Punjabi rhythms as doled by Jasbir Jassi.

Right at the outset, Jassi regaled medical students, in great numbers (as many as)1,000 who were present at St Anne’s School, Sector 32, the venue of the cultural evening by Jassi. While today’s programme was all about music, many other events had also been organised under Euphoria, which is a 96-hour event of non-stop activity and entertainment. The function would wind up tomorrow with the finals of cricket tournament at PCA, SAS Nagar, and with the most popular event — in contest for Mr and Ms Euphoria. Meanwhile, the results of various contests are as follows (in order of merit):

Song: Shalini (Sundernagar College), Gaurika (GMC, Chandigarh)

Duet: (Reetu and Malika, GMCH-32), Indian folk dance solo: Meha Uppal first and Gauri second; Group 1: GMC, Amritsar, bagged both first as well as the second prize.

Debate: GMC, Amritsar, first; GMC, Chandigarh, second;

Caption contest: Romika Dhar of GMC, Chandigarh, stood first and Arun stood second.

In the all-India medi-cricket tournament, GMC, Jammu, has beaten LLHM, Meerut, in semi- finals.



HUDA-MC crisis over funds transfer ends
Ruchika M. Khanna
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, February 16
Haryana Urban Development Authority (HUDA) will transfer funds to the Municipal Council only after it has made deductions for maintenance of services on behalf of the council.

This was decided in a high-level meeting of the Town and Country Planning Department and the Urban Development Department held recently. This has finally ended the stalemate between HUDA and Municipal Council over the transfer of money , as the newly elected Municipal Council here gets ready to take over the developed sectors for varied services from HUDA.

Well placed sources in the Department of Town and Country Planning informed Chandigarh Tribune that both the departments had agreed in principle to transfer 75 per cent of income generated by HUDA as extension fee, building application fee and compounding fee as in the agreement between the two departments, only after deductions had been made for services such as water supply, sanitation, maintenance of roads, sewerage, street lighting and horticulture services being rendered by HUDA even after the formation of the Municipal Council in January 2001.

HUDA officials say that since all development and maintenance activities in the sectors within the MC limits have so far been carried out by HUDA till the actual transfer of departments, the MC would be paid the money only from the time they have taken over the functioning of these departments.

As of now only two services have been transferred to the council — sanitation and street lighting — while the rest of the services within the MC limits of Panchkula are still being carried out by HUDA.

Sources in Department of Town and Country Planning also informed that it has also been decided to retain the services of sewerage and water supply by HUDA on account of MC not having requisite technical expertise for running these facilities on its own.

Meanwhile, nothing had been decided about the transfer of staff from HUDA to Municipal Council, Panchkula. It may be noted that HUDA had proposed to transfer about 150 of its staff to MC, but the Finance Department has sanctioned only 104 posts for MC. The total staff to be transferred from HUDA to MC is still unclear.

The HUDA authorities have also asked the District Town Planner and Executive Officer, Municipal Council, to identify a site for slaughter house and meat market. It is also learnt that HUDA will have to provide for other basic infrastructure like cremation ground , Transport Nagar, disposal/landfill site for solid waste management plants for proper maintenance and operation of essential services of town. 



Shimla girl accuses M.K. Jain of rape
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, February 16
Adding a new twist to the case of abduction of 23-year-old Shimla girl by four persons, including Manoj Pal and businessman M.K. Jain, the girl has now charged her captors of raping her in confinement.

The police has now added Section 376 of the IPC to the FIR lodged in the case in Sector 19 police station after receiving a copy of the medical report from a team of doctors at General Hospital here. A medical examination of the girl was conducted yesterday on grounds that she had been sexually molested by her captors while in their confinement from February 8 to 11.

The girl had not charged the accused of rape in either her statement before the police on the night intervening February 11 and 12 or in her statement made before the Chief Judicial Magistrate, Panchkula, under Section 164 of the Cr. PC on February 12.

This is the third time that the girl has changed her statement about her abduction by the accused from the Amartex chowk on February 8. The girl, in her statement to the police had said while she was coming to Panchkula from the Chandigarh bus stand in an autorickshaw, she was abducted by two persons who were following her in a black car. She said the two men picked her up and took her in the car, where Manoj Pal and M.K. Jain were seated. Manoj Pal threatened her with a revolver and asked her to withdraw her case against M.K. Jain.

She stated that they blindfolded her, gave her tea laced with sedative, kept her in wrongful confinement for two days, took away her jewellery and later on February 11, all four accused, including Manoj Pal, released her on a deserted road.

Manoj Pal was in the police custody in a separate case on charges of theft from February 9 to 12. Interestingly, in the statement made before the CJM under Section 164 of Cr.PC, the prosecutor had said Manoj Pal was not present when she was released.

Today’s charges of rape against the accused came at a time when the two accused — Manoj Pal and M.K. Jain — had got relief from local courts here during the past three days. While Manoj Pal was sent to judicial custody in a case registered on charges of abduction, criminal intimidation and robbery on February 13, another court had stayed the arrest of M.K. Jain on the same charges till February 18.

With the police now adding a charge of rape, the accused, including M.K. Jain, can be arrested under this new section.



Rules ignored in allotment of cops’ quarters
Rajmeet Singh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 16
Resentment prevails among the lower-level staff in the Chandigarh Police over the rules being followed in the allotment of houses in the police pool.

Under the police pool, the Chandigarh Administration has been allocated staff quarters in various parts of the city. While those having contacts enjoy the benefit of choosing the better quarters the others wait in vain for the approval of applications for mutual transfer or allotment of staff quarters.

Investigation by the TNS has revealed that there are certain cases in which the Allotment Branch had ignored earlier applications and approved later ones.

Sources in the Police Department say though there are standing orders necessitating approval of senior police officials in the allotment or transfer cases, the officials are not apprised of the facts of the cases.

There are basically five categories of houses in Sectors 19, 20, 23, 42 and 46, apart from the quarters in Sector 26 Police Lines, police stations in Sectors 11,17,26,34,39 and Mani Majra. Now houses of types 11, 12 and 13 are being constructed.

On the condition of anonymity, an official said certain Head Constables who had been given ad hoc promotion, were allotted better quarters. While Head Constable Dharam Pal, posted in the Caretaker Branch, was allotted a type III house, certain cops who were senior to him were still waiting for mutual transfer of quarters.

Investigations reveal that Assistant Sub-Inspector (ASI) Vinod Kumar, who was reverted to parent department, Punjab Police, in November last year, is still in possession of a quarter in Sector 23 C while he has mutually got the quarter transferred with a Sub-Inspector Jaswinder Singh, who lives in Sector 42. The possession of the quarters after the mutual transfer has also been taken on paper. But both officials are still physically possessing the quarters.

The Inspector-General (IG)of Police, Mr Rajesh Kumar, when contacted said no such case was brought to his notice. “On every Thursday, employees are allowed to air their grievance before me”, said the IG, adding that the employees should bring the facts to his notice. The IG said he would inquire into the matter of any official holding a quarter in violation of the rules.



Satguru Jagjit Singh’s son’s FIR not registered
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 16
Thakur Dalip Singh, the adopted son of Satguru Jagjit Singh of the Namdhari sect, has alleged that the Ropar police is not registering an FIR against those persons who were involved in an “assault” on his wife in the district court complex, Ropar, on February 14.

Talking to mediapersons here this evening, he said two women accompanied by a few persons caught hold of his wife when they were coming down the stairs of the court and started beating her without any reason. The persons who accompanied the women started clicking photographs and shooting a video movie of the incident. He suspected a conspiracy behind the incident to implicate them in a case by conspiring with the police.

Thakur Dalip Singh alleged that immediately after the incident they approached the SSP, who refused to meet them. Although, on a telephonic conversation the SSP promised to register an FIR and arrest the culprits. But two days after the incident no FIR was lodged. The SHO (city) Ropar, also refused to meet him, he alleged.



C’wealth Secy-Gen visits PEC
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 16
In the backdrop of UN inspection teams searching for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and the USA pressing to launch an attack on the country, issues pertaining to Iraq will figure in the Commonwealth Secretary General, Mr Donald C McKinnon’s meeting with the Prime Minister, Atal Behari Vajpayee at New Delhi later this week. He termed the developments in Iraq as a “big issue which affects us all”.

Stating this while interacting with mediapersons here today, Mr McKinnon said the purpose of his visit to this country was to hold discussions with the Prime Minister as well as select Cabinet Ministers to work out the modalities for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, scheduled to be held later. The meeting is held after every two years.

This is Mr McKinnon’s first visit to the Commonwealth Youth Programme (CYP) Asia Centre, located in the Punjab Engineering College campus here. Mr McKinnon, who hails from New Zealand, was elected Secretary-General in April 2000.

Stating that 32 countries were directly affected by the Doha round of talks being undertaken by the World Trade Organisation (WTO), the Secretary-General said that Commonwealth was also assessing the preparations of countries as to how far they were prepared to go along with the issues involved in certain areas covered under the Doha talks.

Trade accesses and reduction of subsidies by the developed countries are among the major issues at the Doha round, he said. Some of the Commonwealth countries are worried on this front.

Mr McKinnon said the main area of Commonwealth’s strength was debt restructuring. He said programmes to reschedule debt repayments were being undertaken for the Commonwealth as well as non-Commonwealth countries. While such programme were free of cost for Commonwealth countries, fees were charged for the purpose from non-Commonwealth countries.

The Secretary-General launched the Commonwealth youth credit initiative, which will be implemented by NSS volunteers from Punjab Engineering College under the supervision of the Principal and senior lecturers. “Young Asia” the CYP Asia Magazine was also released by him on the occasion.

Volunteers of the Nehru Youth Kendra presented a cultural programme on the occasion.



Youths’ torture: no FIR registered
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 16
The Garhshankar police has not yet registered an FIR against the police officials who were allegedly responsible for torturing three youth of Jalandhar. Meanwhile, Sanjiv Kumar, who was allegedly tortured jointly by the Jalandhar and Garhshankar police along with two of his friends Roshan Lal and Vipin Kumar has demanded to constitute a medical board for doing proper medico-legal examination.

That they all got admitted to General Hospital, Sector 16, with multiple injuries, on Febuary 12, following their release from police custody on bail. Next day, the Punjab and Haryana High Court directed to prepare the medical examination report at General Hospital, Sector-16, Chandigarh including MRI and all other required medical investigation to detect torture.

Demanding the constitution of a medical board to identify torture injuries , Sanjiv has alleged that the doctors who conducted his medical examination have not mentioned the word ‘torture’ in the MLR report. Instead, the doctors have written ‘alleged assault’. The internal injuries on his feet were also not mentioned in the MLR report.

In a letter to the Medical Superintendent, Sanjeev has stated: “I have also noticed that injuries in my abdomen, which caused blockade of urine and which had to be taken out by putting cathedral. But this has not been noted down in the MLR”.

Meanwhile, Shashi, a human rights activist of Jalandhar has alleged that the police was putting pressure on them to withdraw their petitions from High Court.

However, when contacted, Mr Navjot Singh, DSP, Garhshankar denied the allegations and said they were not putting any kind of pressure on Shashi or his friends.

In reply to a question, he said the police had not yet filed an FIR against the persons involved in “assault” on them. However, they have recorded the statements of all three victims from the hospital. The report has been forwarded to the SSP, Hoshiarpur, for further action, he added.



Advanced optical imagers await ISRO approval
Vijay Mohan
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 16
Indigenous capability for acquiring high speed images under low light conditions by satellites is now a reality. The design phase for two advanced imaging components has been completed by Semi Conductors Limited (SCL), Mohali, and is awaiting approval by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).

Chairman-cum-Managing Director of SCL, Dr M.J. Zarabi, told The Tribune during a symposium on micro-electronics organised at Panjab University that two projects to design and fabricate advance optical imagers had been awarded to SCL by the ISRO. The cost of these projects is to the tune of Rs 16 crore, he added.

The development of this technology would do away with the need to depend on foreign suppliers. Presently, the ISRO is using similar off-the-shelf components procured from a French company, Thompson.

SCL’s Deputy General Manager (Strategic Planning), Mr S.K. Ambardar, said the currently available components in the international market did not offer any flexibility in operations and the ISRO could not carry out certain experiments.

The indigenous components, while being tailor-made for the requirements of the ISRO, would also open a technological window for the Indian space scientists in areas where sensitive, dual-use technology was not available. The components, understood to be incorporated on the Indian Remote Sensing (IRS) series of satellites, would vastly improve the quality of resolution of images generated by satellites.

Typical applications for these devices include imaging where the target was in relative motion to the imaging device, astronomical imaging, missile seeking, military reconnaissance, aerial photography, spectrographic analysis, medical radiography.

Apart from mapping, the imaging devices would also find applications in facsimile, document scanning, consumer photography, industrial and scientific measurements and and industrial inspection activities.

Meanwhile, SCL had been selected as a “national foundry” for micro-electro-mechanical systems (MEMS) under the national programme on smart materials. A Central Government programme funded by the Defence Research and Development Organisation had been initiated to upgrade the facilities for MEMS, under which equipment was being procured from several overseas firms.



Cong leaders’ act immoral: Naqvi
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 16
Lashing out at the Congress, BJP spokesperson Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said Congress President Sonia Gandhi should clarify whether the involvement of two Punjab Ministers and another MLA from Delhi in an alleged sex scandal would be the role model of governance in Congress-ruled States?

Talking to the mediapersons here this evening, the BJP leader said that the tandoor incident of mid-90s at Delhi and the Gujarat sex scandal had become a part of the Congress culture.

Mr Naqvi said the police had got concrete evidence of the involvement of two Punjab Ministers Pratap Singh Bajwa and Amarjit Singh Samra and a Congress MLA from Delhi Arvinder Singh Lali for their alleged involvement in immoral acts. They stayed at Taj Regency Hotel, Ahmedabad from December 2 to December 9, during the campaigning of the Gujarat Assembly elections.

“The immoral act of Congress leaders had exposed the true colours of Congress”, he said. Refusing to demand the resignation of Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on behalf of the party, the BJP spokesperson said Congress President Sonia Gandhi should clarify that whether the involvement of their leaders in a sex scandal would be the role model of governance in Congress-ruled States?

He further said,”the alleged involvement of Congress leaders in the sex scandal had added a black chapter in the Indian history. It was shameful on part of the policy makers of the Congress. Women associated with the Congress should come forward and raise their voice with in the party against those leaders who were involved in such incidents”.

“There was no social security in Laloo’s Bihar, where the Congress had supported the RJD to form the state government. Every day, at least 12 persons were murdered. On the other hand, the Congress Government in Punjab was involved in sex scandals. The face of Congress stands exposed-off”, he added.



Follow teachings of Guru Ravi Dass’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 16
The 626th birth anniversary of Guru Ravi Dass was celebrated at Guru Ravi Das Bhavan, Sector-20 D here, today. Langar was also served to the devotees who attended the function. Hundreds of devotees purchased photos and calenders depicting the life of Guru Ravi Das.

In SAS Nagar, the birth anniversary of Guru Ravi Dass was celebrated at the local Ravi Das Bhavan. Addressing devotees, the Punjab State Forest Minister, Mr Harbans Lal, who was the chief guest on the occasion, stressed upon the need to implement various government policies for the dalits. He also pointed out that the government had fresh plans lined up for them. Mr Lal also exhorted the devotees to follow the teachings of Guru Ravi Dass.

In Panchkula, Member of Parliament, Ambala, Mr Rattan Lal Kataria, was the chief guest at a function organised to celebrate the birth anniversary of Guru Ravi Dass at Ravi Dass Bhavan, Sector 15.

Mr Kataria decried the Haryana Government for not invoking the 85th Amendment of the Constitution, which provided for several sops for the backward classes and the Scheduled Castes. He said most of the states in the country had invoked this amendment, thus benefitting people from the lower socioeconomic strata.

He also announced a grant of Rs 2.5 lakh for the upgradation of Ravi Dass Bhavan here. Mr Kanti Prakash Bhalla, a former minister of Haryana, was also present on this occasion.



A clarification

Reference to article ‘Shake, rattle and roll’ published in these columns on February 12, the photograph of Ms Payal Sharma was published by mistake. She has nothing to do with the contents of the article, directly or indirectly. We regret the error.




Saturday turned out to be a very special day for the visitors at Student Centre, Panjab University as one of the eateries there had installed a television specially for the cricket World Cup matches. The Indian team was first to bat and a large number of visitors sat around the TV with beverages and eatables and started enjoying the match. But as the Indian top batting lineup started crumbling, the attendance around the TV started thinning and by the time the Australians came to bat, hardly anyone was left to watch the match.

Geese and hyacinth

Water hyacinth (jal khumbi) is a perennial weed that chokes the ponds, lakes, lagoons, waterways etc. Field trials carried out by the Environment Society of India (ESI) have revealed that geese (anser anser) can effectively control the menace of this unwanted plant.

Six geese were released in a 10x10 feet pond area (see photo) during rainy and winter seasons, that was infested with water hyacinth. It was observed that these birds ate away all the plants within 5-7 days. Normal feed was also given to all birds during this period. These birds also cleared another water plant-typha augusta, has particular preference to its roots.

Geese are ideal birds for integrated farming systems, and are reared with crop residues, grasses and waste vegetables. They are affectionate birds, loyal to the owners and keep a strict watch over the human pests and intruders.

What a fall

The local branch of the Environment Society of India could not distribute prizes to some of the winners of its Basant Utsav celebrations. Reason? Two cartons containing prizes and trophies were damaged after some building material fell on them. The cartons were kept in Green Room, situated at the rear of the stage in Leisure Valley, Sector 10, here. However, the society later made special arrangements to send the prizes to the winners through “special messengers”.

Darwin birthday

The British Library on Tuesday had a different sort of celebration on its agenda. It celebrated the birthday of Charles Darwin who was born in Shrewshbury, England, on February 12, 194 years back. It arranged a prestigious lecture by Prof I.S. Dua of the Department of Botany, Panjab University.

Professor Dua divulged on the topic “Relevance of Darwinism to Modern Biology” for about 90 minutes to a select gathering. He elaborated how a man kept on pondering over his thoughts and data for 25 years and finally came out with a theory in 1858 which revolutionised biology in the next 150 years.

With the help of a rare collection of projections Professor Dua revealed how the thoughts of a genius naturalist ultimately led to the explanations in the field of molecular physiology, neurosciences and even the social sciences. The lecture culminated into a plethora of questions from the audience.

Jivtesh Maini

Mr Jivtesh Singh Maini, IAS, now has the prefix ‘Dr’ with Panjab University awarding him Ph.D for his thesis, ‘’Economic Growth of Punjab, 1966-1996 — a study in the context of environmental sustainability’’. It is analysis of multi-disciplinary linkages with environment of economic growth fuelled as much by the Green Revolution as small-medium industry enterprises and their sustainability.

At present he is Principal Resident Commissioner-cum-State Investment Promotion Commissioner, New Delhi. Dr Maini has had diverse experiences, as a bureaucrat. His first love is environment and economics and is credited with the first-ever ‘’Punjab Environment Status Report, 1995’’. Punjab is his home state, where he began his career as Lecturer in Ludhiana

— Sentinel



Auto-lifters' gangs busted
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 16
The Chandigarh Police has busted two separate gangs involved in auto-lifting in the city. According to information, the officials of Sector 39 Police Station arrested three addicts involved in cases of auto-lifting.

A police official said three persons, Rajesh Thakur, Gurdeep Singh, and Mohan Lal, who were travelling in a Maruti car (HP 03 2813) were intercepted on the road dividing Sectors 55 and 56. On being questioned, the suspects said the Maruti car in which they were travelling was stolen from Sector 45 some days ago. Two car stereos and a fire extinguisher have also been recovered from them.

The modus operandi of the gang was to replicate the keys of a car and pick up with the duplicate key. They have been remanded in a police custody for two days.

In another case, the Mani Majra police has arrested two auto-lifters. The suspects, Manish and Bunty, were arrested from separate parts in the city. While Manish, a resident of Mani Majra, had stolen a scooter (CH 01 H 3321), Bunty had stolen two car steroes from Mani Majra.

In yet another case, the Sector 3 police has arrested two women, Babita and Geeta, both residents of the Geeta colony, for stealing an electric motor, mono block, a pump set, a vibrator, GI pipes and wires. The items were stolen from House No 68, Sector 9.

Cyclist killed

Ashrat AliA 42-year-old machine operator died on the spot late last night when the bicycle he was riding on was hit by a car near Palsora. The victim, Ashrat Ali, was declared brought dead at the PGI here.

According to the police, efforts were being made to track down the erring driver. A case under Sections 279 and 304 A of the IPC has been registered at the Sector 39 police station. The victim worked at Saini Graphics in Phase 7 of the SAS Nagar. He is survived by his wife and four children.


Home | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Editorial |
Business | Sport | World | Mailbag | In Spotlight | Chandigarh Tribune | Ludhiana Tribune
50 years of Independence | Tercentenary Celebrations |
123 Years of Trust | Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |